A Scottish Holiday: The Isle of Skye

A mere 5 hours after Kat left, Will and I were stuffing our packs into Gilly’s car to head over to Skye for the weekend. Now, it may have seemed like a good idea to have the two events back to back, but I’m really a 79 yr old woman in a 29 yr old’s body. I chalk it up to good genes (thanks momma!). So, needless to say, I struggled to get pumped in the beginning. BUT, grandma got there… after sleeping most of the way.

We drove by a castle I had been wanting to see for a while, Eliean Donan Castle, woke up to snap a couple of pix, went back to sleep just to wake up for lunch a bit later. Yeah, I get the award for best backseat buddy. We then made our way over to the Fairy Pools once we got onto Skye; but not before stopping by the Talisker Distillery for a quick taster!

On Saturday Will and I went back to the Talisker Distillery to get a tour.  We met back up with Gilly and Elizabeth to hike Old Man of Storr. Now, I was not looking forward to this hike for three reasons: a) it was raining b) the midges were out for blood and c) please refer to both a and b. Yeah, I was wearing my grumpy  boots… until I realized I was in MIDDLE EARTH!!!

And this is what we do in Middle Earth.

Sunday we went out to the western most part of Skye. But it was not photographed well because my camera got a bit of water in it and my phone died (double fail). But I did manage to catch this precious momma with her baby lamb (win!).

And that was Skye!

Will and I enjoyed ourselves. We think Skye is gorgeous and it was great spending time with Gilly and Elizabeth. We’re already thinking about next year’s trip!

You can read about last year’s trip here, here, and here.

A Scottish Holiday: Stirling

As I had mentioned before, Jared and Lauryn Galloway were here. They came all the way from good ‘ole RVA to hang out with us! We loved it! Seriously, it was great to spend time with them.
Jared and Lauryn arrived here on a Friday morning (booooooo flight delays) and we spent the weekend getting over jet lag… it’s not easy crossing the Atlantic; but they’re absolute troopers. Friday’s task was walking around the city, Saturday the Galloways went to Glasgow to see some of Jared’s family and we did a pub crawl when they got back, and Sunday was more Edinburgh. Then, on Monday we went to Stirling. Will and I had heard that the Stirling Castle was comparable to Edinburgh Castle so we thought we’d check that out.

I really love the colors of the front doors here.

I love seeing the flags at the entrances of castles. It makes me wonder what a visitor of the castle during medieval time must have thought when entering the castle.

The exterior of the Great Hall was plastered in a limewash called “King’s Gold.” It has this golden hue to it that really brightens up when the sun hits it.

Apparently Spring has sprung in this one spot only… no where else.

Lauryn doin’ her thang!

We stopped in the castle’s cafe to thaw ourselves out before heading back towards the train station.

I’m learning that America has very few original names… case in point. I’m pretty sure this one came first.

I love train rides!

I also love it when people take my camera!

And there you have our trip to Stirling with the Galloways!

A Scottish Holiday: Linlithgow

A couple of weekends ago Will and I went to Linlithgow with some friends. There’s a palace there and it was a great excuse to get out of Edinburgh. The sun also joined us!

Will and I used our Historic Scotland passes to get in and were blown away at the structure. I hadn’t even been inside Edinburgh’s castle yet so this was my first time inside of one. The stories that could be said about all that went on and work that went into not just building the place but also heating it overwhelmed me a bit. It’s a lot to take in when you walk into a building that’s older than your own country.

I’ll give you 10 tries to guess what they’re talking about… and the 1st nine don’t count.

I couldn’t believe how sunny and clear it was. We could see for miles!

We attempted to take some pictures and then headed out to the gardens for some lunch and to feed the birds.

Photo courtesy of Aubree and Luke

I think the boys texted each other in the morning to make sure they would all be wearing the same color scheme…

Afterwards we parked ourselves in a nearby cafe to warm up, fill bellies, empty bladders, and recharge. Then we headed back to the train station.

It was such a nice trip. Good to get out of the city. Good to hang out with friends. And especially good to see the sun. Oh how I missed the sun.


First of all, the name “Alnwick” is not pronounced at all as you would think. And secondly, it has one of the largest (and coolest) second-hand book shops ever! Oh, and third, anytime with Vanessa and Cameron is a guaranteed good time! Guar-an-teed!

I loved walking into the book store because the first room you walk in to is full of those paper globe lights that IKEA sells. They’re really overdone, in my opinion (of course I have 2 in my flat right now, so, I’m going to shut up now) but their ceiling was FULL of these paper lanterns. I loved it!

There were rows and rows and rows of books. We could have stayed there all day if we had had the time. There was also a cafe which looked so cozy. If I lived in Alnwick I would definitely frequent Barter Books and make it my go-to chill spot.

The town was really cute. tight roads, cozy cafes, and colorful shops.

We didn’t get a chance to go into the castle but we had heard that it’s one of the favorites in England: next time.

After walking around a bit we settled ourselves into a Costa to before heading home. These are my favorite times. Times when you’re spending all day together and as that time comes to an end we’re looking for any excuse to delay it and keep hanging out!

I enjoyed Alnwick a lot. It was nice to see a different part of England other than London. We’re eager to explore more of England!